The 5 best balance transfer credit cards with a 0% APR in March 2023
The best balance transfer credit cards can help you pay off your debt faster.
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You may have accrued a significant amount of debt over the past few years if you are like many Americans. You may find it difficult to pay your monthly credit card bills. Instead of falling further behind, consolidate your debt by using a balance transfer creditcard.
Balance transfer credit cards provide a 0% annual percentage rate (APR), on balances you transfer from other credit cards. The introductory rate is applicable to transferred debt for a period of 12 to 21 months after you open the card. This means that if you transfer your current balance, you will not pay interest until 2024.
Many balance transfer credit cards offer excellent rewards for everyday purchases. Some even offer useful perks like travel insurance or cell phone protection. Check out our top balance transfer credit cards list to find the one that best suits your needs.
Best balance transfer credit cards in 2023
Citi Rewards+ (r) Card: Great for small purchases
These cards were chosen as the best balance transfer credit card for March 2023. CNN Underscored's credit card analysis compares each balance transfer credit credit card to its 'benchmark card' to help you determine which cards could bring you the most value. Let's take a look at each card and compare them with our benchmark credit card.
Citi Diamond Preferred: Balance transfers at their best
It's amazing in one sentence. If you are looking to lower your interest payments the Citi Diamond Preferred offers an 0% APR for balance transfers within the first four months of opening the card. After that period, the interest rate will rise to variable 17.49% to 28,24%.
This card is for: Individuals who need a longer time to consolidate debt. It offers 21 months at the introductory interest and a long period of balance transfers. You still get the introductory deal.
There is no annual fee
Sign up bonus: None
The Citi Diamond Preferred is our favorite card. It's a great option if you have a long time to organize your finances. You can simplify your life with the long introductory rate for balance transfers. This means that you could consolidate all of your debt onto one card, and then pay down your owes through 2023 and 2024.
After opening the Citi Diamond Preferred, you have four months to balance transfer and still qualify for the introductory interest rate. Keep in mind that the 21 month clock begins from the date you make your first transfer. If you have multiple transfers, it is best to do them all at the same time.
Citi Diamond Preferred cards also come with an online FICO credit score and allow you to choose when your payments are due. This is very helpful for people who need maximum flexibility and can pay their credit cards according to their schedule.
The Citi Diamond Preferred does not offer rewards. You won't be able to earn ThankYou Rewards points or cash back for purchases. This is a missed chance, since there are credit cards that offer cash back on all purchases, which you can use to increase your credit card balance.
A 5% fee with a minimum of $5 will be charged on balance transfers to Citi Diamond Preferred. This fee is higher than the average balance transfer fee. The higher fee may be worth it for the added time and no interest on balance transfers.
It beats our benchmark card in two areas: A longer 21-month introductory rate for balance transfers and a 12-month introductory rate for purchases.
Our benchmark card has a better rating: Citi Double Cash earns cash back on all purchases.
U.S. Bank Visa Platinum card: Ideal for long-term balance transfers
It's amazing in one sentence: U.S. Bank Visa Platinum offers a long introductory balance transfer period that lasts 18 billing cycles. This card is also one of few balance transfer cards to offer cell phone insurance as an option.
This card is for: Individuals who want cell phone protection and extra time to pay their balance transfers.
There is no annual fee
Sign-up bonus: None.
We love the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum because it offers cell phone protection. You can use your card to pay for your cell phone bill and you will be covered against theft or damage up to $600 with a $25 deductable, as well as up to two claims within a 12-month time frame.
The card offers a 0% APR on balance transfers for 18 billing cycles. This is one of the longest introductory offers available. However, the rate will jump to variable 19.24% to 29.54% after the offer ends. This card doesn't have an annual fee and will give you more time to pay off your debt.
The introductory interest rate for the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Platinum is also extended to purchases made within the first 18 billing cycles. This could prove to be very useful if you are planning to finance a large purchase.
The U.S. Bank Visa Platinum does not have a sign-up bonus or rewards program. This means that you will not earn any money by using the card as a regular credit line. This card's primary purpose should be to purchase and transfer balances, as well as protect your cell phone.
You have only 60 days to transfer balances from your other cards and get the introductory rate. This is shorter than the time required to transfer balances from other cards, but not too short. You'll also have to pay a 3% fee on balance transfers to the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum (with a minimum of $5), which is common when it comes balance transfer offers.
It beats our benchmark card in this area: A introductory interest rate for purchases and protection cell phones.
Our benchmark card has something better: Citi Double Cash earns cash back on all purchases, and there is a longer period of four months to complete balance transfers.
Citi Double Cash Card: Flat-rate cash back
It's simple and effective: The Citi Double Cash Card is great because you get 2% cash back on all purchases -- 1% when your purchase, 1% when paying your statement -- all without an annual fee.
This card is for people who are looking to transfer their balance and earn cash back, without worrying about travel rewards or bonus categories.
There is no annual fee
Sign-up bonus: None.
We love the Citi Double cash Card because it is so easy to use. It's easy to forget about bonus categories or choose which credit card to use at what merchant. You get the same 2% cashback -- 1% when your buy and 1% when it's paid off -- regardless of where you shop.
Citi Double Cash offers balance transfers at a long introductory 0% APR (18.49% to 28.59% variable thereafter) -- an excellent way to repay your debt. You have four months to make your first balance transfer, and it will still qualify for the introductory offer.
This card is great to pair with a Citi Premier Card or one of the Citi ThankYou credit cards. You can use the Citi Double Cash as Citi ThankYou rewards to transfer to any Citi partner airline to get even more value if you have a premium ThankYou credit card.
One thing that could be improved: The Citi Double Cash does not come with many perks such as purchase protections or travel protections. Balance transfers are subject to a $5 minimum fee and a 3% fee. However, this is similar to other cards. This card is not recommended for international purchases. You'll be charged a foreign transaction fee of 3% when you travel overseas. This will more than offset any rewards you might earn.
Why it's our "benchmark" credit card: Because of its ease of use, top-of the-market cash back earning rate and simplicity of the Citi Double Cash, CNN Underscored considers the Double Cash their 'benchmark credit card. It is our benchmark card, which allows us to compare other credit cards' features and decide if they are better overall.
Read more about our benchmark credit cards concept in our credit-card methodology guide or read our full review of Citi Double Cash.
Chase Freedom Flex: The best for rotating bonus categories
It's amazing in one sentence: Chase Freedom Flex offers a solid balance transfer option and allows you to earn cashback that can be used for travel rewards when combined with the Chase Sapphire Reserve(r) or Chase Sapphire Preferred(r).
This card is for people who want flexible rewards and to manage their debt.
There is no annual fee
Sign up bonus: Get $200 in bonus cash after you spend $500 in the first three months of opening an account.
The Chase Freedom Flex is what we love: If you want cash back but also desire adventure, the Chase Freedom Flex could be the right choice for you.
The Chase Freedom Flex offers a 0% introductory rate on purchases and balance transfers during the first 15 months of account opening. After that, the rate will rise to variable 19.49% to 28.54%. You'll need to pay off your debt by the end of the intro offer.
The Chase Freedom Flex earns cash back in three categories: 5% cashback on travel purchases via Chase Ultimate Rewards; 3% cashback on dining (including takeout) and 3% cashback at drugstores.
You'll also get 5% cashback on purchases up to $1500 in bonus categories that change each quarter. Target, grocery stores (except Walmart), fitness clubs and gym memberships are the categories that will be available from January to March. However, each quarter has its own categories.
This is a great deal for a cash-back credit card. When you combine the Chase Freedom Flex and the Chase Sapphire Preferred, or Chase Sapphire Reserve cards, your cash back can be converted to points at a 1 cent per point rate. You can then redeem your points for travel at an increase value of 1.25 to 1.5c per point via the Chase travel portal or transfer them to any one of Chase Ultimate Rewards' 14 hotel and airline loyalty partners to potentially even greater value.
The best part? You can only earn bonus cash back up to $1,500 per quarter in the rotating bonuses categories. You'll only get a 1% return after that. It's important to track how much you spend in these categories each quarter.
To earn 5% cashback on rotating bonus categories, you need to remember to activate them each quarter. You can activate them at any time during the quarter, and you will still receive the bonus cash retroactively for purchases you have made. However, it is important to not miss the deadline.
It beats our benchmark card in several areas: Sign-up bonus and cell phone purchase protections. Also, a 15% introductory rate for purchases during the first 15 months.
Our benchmark card has a better rate: The Citi Double Cash offers higher cash back rates overall.
Citi Rewards+ Card: The best for small purchases
It's amazing in one sentence: Citi Rewards+'s 'round-up" feature earns additional rewards. This is great if you use your card for small purchases. The Citi Rewards+ introductory balance transfer offer can also lower your interest rate on existing debt.
This card is for: Individuals who want to earn more points on small purchases, but also consolidate their credit card debt.